16th Dec 2003, 15:22

'98 mystique LS

Warranty controversy re: catalytic converter not honored due to location of manufacture not federal emissions warranty and state of delivery. Cost $1400.

Sticky interior trunk release.

Shimmy and shake at high speed braking (60 mph). New brakes, rotors and pads. Cost $379 Still there.

Blown transmission. Solenoids, stater, torque converter.

Cost $2700+ ouch.

Enjoy the vehicle when it isn't in the shop for repairs.

Cost over-runs outweighing total worth.

American manufacturers making me turn Japanese. Cost vs. value. It is painful for a Union man, but, I work hard for the money, therefor I must insist on quality.

9th Jun 2004, 09:09

I recently purchased a 1998 Mystique for a whopping deal of a price. I couldn't believe my good fortune on a used car.

I have owned the car for 4 weeks. Two of those weeks, it has been in the shop.

EVERYTHING you all mentioned about the car - I got!

The shimmy at 60mph, the vibration and jerking and rumbling when shifting into gear.

The best part is the 1st repair they put in the transmission overhaul kit that supposedly fixed the valve body, which is supposedly the key to the transmission problems of the Mystique. The material of the body is too soft and wears out over time (around 85,000 miles) and the function gets sloppy leaving the transmission to flounder.

It worked for 1 week. This week it is jerking into gear, the shimmy and the rumble are back. Today it is back in the shop to see what else they can fix.

I am crazy with remorse over my purchase. I would like to go back to the dealer and give him the key, tell him where the car is sitting and walk away. Still might do that.

If I can just get the darn thing on the road for more than a week at a time, I would be happier. I love the car, the interior, the look... but as you have all noted... the transmission is the absolute worst!

Would I recommend this nightmare to anyone else - well maybe my worst enemy, but no one who I may ever want to speak to again. Good luck to all.

4th Sep 2005, 16:52

I purchased my Mercury Mystique in February of 2004, and I still have it. It has a very nice look, I will agree. My hard shifting only seems to happen when I drive a distance greater than 60 miles, and then it only happens in the city. Once I return to highway driving, I don't notice it. My biggest problem is the catalytic converters are coding for the check engine light, and it is a pain. I brought it back to the place I bought it, and they just turned the light off 4 times while my warranty was intact. Right after my warranty expired, they basically told me tough luck and that I was on my own. I should have reported them under the lemon laws, but alas, I think it is too late. I think it is time to switch back to a Chevy.

20th Nov 2005, 15:51

I bought the car new in 1998. There were two recalls that I remember distinctly in the first year or two (one came just after the part in question failed in my car, resulting in having to have my car towed ~40 miles to a dealership and three days without the car while they hunted down the problem.) I want to say there was a third recall, but I don't remember exactly what it was.

I have had many of the same problems others have described. The check engine light has come on and been "fixed" no fewer than 4 times. I just had the O2 sensor replaced for the third time. I just yesterday spent $1500 having a whole series of problems fixed that were related to the fuel system; this problem apparently wasn't there 6 weeks ago when the car was in the shop because the serpentine belt broke.

The transmission problem people have described has been dreadful. I have been told that it's probably the torque converter causing the problem, but that I will probably need a new transmission entirely as a result. I would not be surprised if the neck pain I sometimes have is a result of the car's lurching when shifting from 1st to 2nd (and sometimes 2nd to 3rd) gears. Beyond being pain (literally!) it is really rather embarrassing.

All in all, I would not buy this car again. I don't even think I'd buy a Mercury or Ford again considering the number of times the service departments at the dealerships have tried to rip me off.

27th Dec 2005, 08:29

I have a 1998 LS. Loved it for all these years. The check engine light started coming on around 2001 - usually minor fixes took care of it. But lately, I've had the hard shift problem mentioned above. Transmission shop says this is a common problem with Ford products from that time. We've replaced or repaired the solenoid, servo, valve body, and various sensors, and it's still doing it. Next stop, new tranny, or more likely, a new HONDA!!!

I'm gonna miss those leather, power seats and the classy wood look trimmings, though...


11th Mar 2006, 09:12

Bought a 1998 Mystique in 2002. Less than a year transmission went out. I had to pay $3,000 for new transmission. When they say new, it is a new re-manufactured transmission. They claim nobody gets a new transmission (per service manager). We had 39,000 or 3 years on this transmission. On February 20, 2006, the transmission went out again. Under warranty, but for your information, the warranty picks up where the old one left out. So, we have 13,000 miles or until October of 2006. You would think Mercury could stand behind their products, but they would not give us a better warranty on this transmission. They told me if I had bought the transmission myself, I would get the 3 years/39,000.

Don't buy a Mystique. They are nothing but lemons from the day they were manufactured.

20th Oct 2006, 18:54

Last year (October), the engine in my 1998 Mystique died - it was at 148,000 km; we replaced it with another Mystique engine with 10,000 fewer km. Given several different reasons, but one of the things was that the coolant was leaking; caused the engine to overheat and whamo... dead duck! No lights came on in the car to indicate the engine was overheating... pressure in the vehicle dropping etc., Anyway, long story short... most recently in taking the car to a different mechanic, I was told the mechanic who replaced the engine either didn't install the bolts at the back of the engine or if he did so, didn't do it properly. Right now the engine is secured by the bolts on each side. Went back to the original mechanic, who said he definitely secured the bolts; that he noticed when the burnt out engine was removed, these bolts were off/stripped. Anyway, the old mechanic tells me it's a manufacturer's defect that the bolts stripped; another mechanic tells me the old mechanic is full of crap...I'm not sure what to do; I'm quite happy to find a way to resolve the problem with the old mechanic and come up with a reasonable plan, but I don't really feel as though I have enough knowledge to speak to the issue. Any help out there? Email omytmouse@hotmail.com